Clinical Trials

The Martin-O’Neil Cancer Center participates in the Clinical Trials Cooperative Group Program sponsored by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The program supports clinical research studies of new cancer treatments that may improve the quality of life for patients today and the standard of cancer care in the future.

Our access to the National Cancer Institute (NCI) clinical trials is bolstered by our unique affiliation with the University of California, San Francisco, (UCSF), a top 10 cancer research facility and one of just three NCI Designated Comprehensive Cancer Center by the NCI. This affiliation brings the expertise of this Top 10 cancer research facility to benefit your own cancer journey close to home.

As our patient, you gain the advantage of new, experimental cancer therapies that are not available at other treatment centers. Upon approval, you may participate in a unique clinical trial sponsored by the National Cancer Institute.

You will also benefit for our direct connection with UCSF’s cancer specialists. They share their expertise regularly through consultation with our oncologists. The medical staffs at UCSH and Martin-O’Neil Cancer Center hold joint conferences on challenging cancer cases to determine the best course of treatment, and physicians at the Martin-O’Neil Cancer Center serve as liaisons to enroll appropriate patients. You will not have to travel to San Francisco to benefit from these trials because you will receive the same care at the Martin-O’Neil Cancer Center.

Benefits of Clinical Trials

The clinical trials at UCSF are research studies that test the effectiveness of new cancer drugs, diagnostic procedures and various cancer therapies. There are several benefits to participation, including:

  • Close monitoring of your case by the clinical staff at UCSF
  • Trial sponsors may cover costs that your insurance does not cover
  • The assurance that your participation in a trial could help future patients with cancer
  • Potential early access to new treatment therapies that are tomorrow’s standards

Types of Clinical Trials Available Through UCSF

  • Preventive Trials: test various medicines, vitamins, minerals, supplements and lifestyle changes that may lower the risk of cancer
  • Treatment Trials: test new treatments- new cancer drugs, new approaches to surgery or radiation therapy, or new combinations of different therapies.
  • Screening and Observational Trials: test the best way to detect cancer, focusing particularly on finding cancer in its early stages.
  • Quality of Life Trials: investigate the ways to improve the comfort and quality of life for cancer patients.

Deciding to Take Part in a Clinical Trial

When you need treatment for cancer, you may want to think about joining a clinical trial. Like all treatment options, clinical trials have possible benefits and risks. By looking closely at all options, including clinical trials, you are taking an active role in a decision that affects your life.

Possible Benefits

  • You will have access to a new treatment that is not available to people outside the trial.
  • The research team will watch you closely.
  • If the treatment being studied is more effective than the standard treatment, you may be among the first to benefit.
  • The trial may help scientists learn more about cancer and help people in the future.

Possible Risks

  • The new treatment may not be better than, or even as good as, the standard treatment.
  • New treatments may have side effects that doctors do not expect or that are worse than those of the standard treatment.
  • You may be required to make more visits to the doctor than if you were receiving standard treatment. You may have extra expenses related to these extra visits, such as travel and childcare costs.
  • You may need extra tests. Some of the tests could be uncomfortable or time consuming.
  • Even if a new treatment has benefits in some patients, it may not work for you.
  • Health insurance may not cover all patient care costs in a trial.

Who Can Join

Every clinical trial has a protocol, or study plan, that describes what will be done during the trial, how the trial will be conducted, and why each part of the trial is necessary. The protocol also includes guidelines for who can and cannot take part in the trial. These guidelines are called eligibility criteria.

Common eligibility criteria include:

  • Having a certain type or stage of cancer
  • Having received (or not having received) a certain kind of therapy in the past
  • Having specific genetic changes in your tumor
  • Being in a certain age group
  • Medical history
  • Current health status

Criteria such as these help reduce the medical differences among people in the trial. When people taking part in a trial are alike in key ways, researchers can be more certain that the results are due to the treatment being tested and not to other factors. If you are interested in joining a trial, you will receive medical tests to be sure that you fit for the trial.

Lung Cancer Clinical Trials

CALGB 30610

Phase III Comparison of Thoracic Radiotherapy Regimens in Patients with Limited Small Cell Lung Cancer Also Receiving Cisplatin and Etoposide

SWOG 1400

Phase II/III Biomarker-Driven Master Protocol for Second Line Therapy of Squamous Cell Lung Cancer (Lung-Map) - Companion treatment trials: S1400G, S1400I

A151216: Alchemist

Adjuvant Lung Cancer Enrichment Marker Identification and Sequencing Trial (ALCHEMIST) - A Screening Trial for A081105, E4512 and EA5142. For Suspected Non-Squamous Stage IB or II Lung Adenocarcinoma


Maintenance Systematic Therapy versus Consolidative Stereotactic Body Radiaiton Therapy (SBRT) plus Maintenance Systemic Therapy for Limited Metastatic Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer (NSCLC): A Randomized Phase II/III Trial

A211401: Alliance

Reducing Surgical Complications in Newly Diagnosed Lung Cancer Patients who Smoke Cigarettes (Pending)

RADIANCE: Medpace/Astra Zeneca

Resistance and Activating Mutations Diagnosed Among Non-small Cell Lung Cancer, Community Dwelling, EGFR Mutation Positive Patients: An Open-Label, Non-Randomized, Prospective Biomarker Study to Assess Analytic Concordance Between Non-Invasive Testing and Tissue Testing for EGFR T790M Mutation Detection in Patients with Non-small Cell Lunb Cancer (Pending)